Ikea to debut AR-powered mobile shopping app

Tyrone Stewart

Ikea GreenwichIkea wants to make it easier for its customers to shop for its products without always having to visit one of its many – often not ideally-placed – stores.

The Swedish furniture giant is going to launch an app which will make use of augmented reality (AR) to provide visualisation and also enable customers to buy products wherever they are.

Customers will be able to capitalise on the AR technology by inputting room dimensions into the app and choosing from different product styles that they think will suit them. Then they can use their mobile device to ‘place’ the item and visualise how it would look. If they’re happy, the customer can then order the product via the app.

It is a completely new experience,” Barbara Martin Coppola, chief digital officer at IKEA, told Reuters, which first reported the news. “The app is combined with the store experience, with the online experience.”

The app will be launched in France and the Netherlands first before being out in the rest of Ikea’s top eight markets – including the UK, US, Germany, and China – by the end of the year.

Ikea’s first run at an AR app came in 2017 when it introduced the ‘Ikea Place’ app. This app, built on Apple’s ARKit, automatically scaled thousands of products to people’s rooms for their visualisation, but did not provide the option to buy. In March 2018, the app arrived for Android ARcore-compatible devices.